Summer in Dubai is always full of surprises, and the chief surprise is that it just keeps getting hotter. Each year it comes as a shock, and right now we’re preoccupied with ways of keeping cool. Our first port of call is The Icecreamists. This frosty cookbook (should we say ‘freezebook?’) is published by the super-cool (and sometimes controversial) London-based ice-cream company, which specialises in outrageous flavours. The first book, now available in Dubai, reveals the recipes for some of these cutting-edge creations. Be warned, ‘Baby Googoo’ is not the most crowd-pleasing of desserts. Nevertheless, the book is still the coolest thing you’ll buy this summer.
When the temperatures hit 40°C it always seems as though you can never have enough ice cream (until your waistline eventually begs to differ). We’re planning to mix things up with a ‘healthier’ option now and then, so we’re glad to note that a new branch of frozen yoghurt brand Pinkberry is due to open over summer in The Dubai Mall.
Cool foods are certainly the way forward at the moment, and Dubai’s restaurants are already on the case: several have introduced new ‘raw bars’ in time for the summer months. These offer a variety of fresh fish and seafood, prepared using marinades and smoking techniques – but, crucially, none of the food is cooked. Gaucho has unveiled a standalone ceviche bar in the lounge dedicated to the Peruvian raw fish dish, which is cured (not cooked) using citrus juices. The chef will prepare a selection of ceviche dishes to order, some of which will be exclusive to the bar. Lounge 44 at Embassy has also launched a new summer menu at its Italian-style crudo bar. As well as oysters, caviar and smoked fish, the crudo bar menu offers Italian-inspired dishes such as scallop carpaccio with pomegranate, cauliflower and seaweed salmoriglio.
More raw food will soon be appearing at Festival City when Polynesian-themed bar Trader Vic’s unveils its new outlet in July. Adding something out of the ordinary to the tried-and-tested Trader Vic’s model, this branch is introducing a Japanese-style raw bar, where chefs will prepare sushi and sashimi dishes to order. The venue is dubbing this an ‘interactive sushi counter’, but we say a raw bar by any other name will still keep us cool in summer.
Finally, we’re pleased to report that new pan-Asian eatery Asia Republic has finally opened at Atlantis The Palm – after some previous reluctance to confirm the opening date, it came as a pleasant surprise. The all-day-dining venue is not currently taking reservations; instead, guests must take tables on arrival on a first-come, first-served basis. Perhaps a good option for impulsive diners, but let us know if you come a cropper with this ad-hoc system. On that note, until next week, bon appétit!